Friday, 7 October 2016

Praise of Peace - Bacchylides

To mortal men Peace giveth these good things:
Wealth, and the flowers of honey-throated song;
      The flame that springs
On carven altars from fat sheep and kine,
Slain to the gods in heaven; and, all day long.
Games for glad youths, and flutes, and wreaths, and circling wine.
Then in the steely shield swart spiders weave
      Their web and dusky woof:
Rust to the pointed spear and sword doth cleave;
The brazen trump sounds no alarms;
Nor is sleep harried from our eyes aloof,
But with sweet rest my bosom warms:
The streets are thronged with lovely men and young.
And hymns in praise of boys like flames to heaven are flung.

Bacchylides (450 BC) Greece
Translated by J. A. Symonds
Source: Greek poets in English verse by Various Translators, Edited by William Hyde Appleton, Houghton, Mifflin & Co, 1893

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